As a leading food and drink agency we are regular attendees at Arena networking events. This December their Christmas event was long-awaited, as it marked not only the unofficial start to Christmas (in my humble opinion), but also the very first function to be held at the Mandarin Oriental since its fire and refurbishment. As well as the draw of the opulent surroundings of the Mandarin Oriental, the running order of the day boasted a presentation from Peter Backman and a talk from Chef Patron of Lympstone Manor, Michael Caines MBE.
The FSM Awards recognises the very best of the contract catering world across its diverse sectors, from workplace to education catering, across everything from management to chef skills, innovation to CSR. The glittering night was compered by Mark Durden-Smith who it seemed had trawled through everyone’s LinkedIn and company websites to find out some of the most embarrassing facts about them (all of which was taken in good humour – thankfully).
Last night we were lucky enough to be invited to Festival 30, the 30th birthday celebrations of The Russell Partnership – industry leading foodservice consultants and long-time client of Jellybean.
Held at the prestigious Royal Garden Hotel, I had the pleasure of attending the first BITES Live conference from H2O Publishing and hearing all about the latest trends and brands shaping the food and drink offerings on our high street.
BITES stands for Brands, Insights, Trends and customer Experiences, which was perfectly covered by the array of exciting speakers discussing hot topics from experiential hospitality to how technology is shaping eating out. Here are my top takeouts from the day: